Project Description

From 4-7 October 2015, South Africa hosted the first ever International Renewable Energy Conference on the African continent: SAIREC. This panel discussion dealt with the future and current situation of Energy Storage for Africa.

With the emergence of variable renewable energy sources, such as solar photovoltaics and wind power, flexibility requirements in the power system are generally increasing. Energy storage solution costs and technical shortcomings are seen as one of the main disadvantages for the incorporation of variable renewable energies on a large scale. This panel addresses the dynamics of the Energy Storage Market by looking at both the technical viability and economic viability of different Energy storage solutions as well as public and government reactions to these options.

With a panel packed with experts (Tobias Bischof-Niemz CSIR Energy Expert, Barry Macoll-Head of Research, Testing and Development at ESKOM, Cedric Philiber-Energy and Climate Analyst of the International Energy Agency, and Wido Schnabel spokesperson for SAPVIA and chairperson of Canadian Solar) the discussion took a look at these main questions around Energy Storage in Africa:

  • What will drive the future battery market?
  • Is energy storage a necessary condition for large uptake of VRE in South Africa?
  • Will solar PV and Batteries be the only components of the future power systems?
  • What impact would a steep cost reduction of utility scale batteries have on the energy mix?
  • What are the major barriers to the uptake of battery storage for various applications?

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Test Preview

  • A.) What is South Africa’s greatest renewable resource?

    (1) Coal (2) Wind (3) Sun (4) Water

  • B.) What form of energy storage is currently the largest on grid?

    (1) Battery Storage (2) Flywheel (3) High Energy Capacitors (4) Pumped-Hydro Storage

  • C.) Does South Africa first need to develop cost effective energy storage solutions for variable renewable energy in order to incorporate them into our energy system?

    (1) Yes  (2) It depends on what form of variable renewable energy (3) No

  • D.) What other industry, besides the energy sector, is driving the energy storage market and looking for solutions to the energy storage dilemma?

    (1) Automotive Industry (2) Agricultural Industry (3) Mining Industry (4) No other Industry involved

  • E.) The external costs of wind and solar energy are …………. the external costs of NEW BUILT coal

    (1) higher than (2) the same as (3) lower than

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